When researching your health insurance options in the state of New Hampshire, there are several questions you should ask yourself when beginning your search. If your employer does not offer benefits, are you healthy enough to obtain health insurance on the individual market? If so, Health Plan One can be of service to you in quoting plans appropriate for your needs and price range. Are you self-employed, owning your own business as a sole proprietor or employing between 2-50 employees? Health Plan One can also assist sole proprietors and small business owners in obtaining small group coverage. Do you have any pre-existing conditions, disabilities, or are you below an income level which could qualify you for free or low-cost health care programs offered by the government? You may be eligible in New Hampshire for Medicaid, Medical Assistance, Healthy Kids, or the high risk pool. Eligibility requirements for each of these options are available on this page.
What Every New Hampshire Resident Should Know About Health Insurance
The type of health insurance familiar to most consumers is group coverage offered by an employer. With group health insurance through your employer the policy is partially paid for by the company on behalf of their employees. The company will contribute a large percentage toward the monthly premium and you (the employee) will be responsible for paying the difference, about 16-27%. With group plans you have little choice in the specific benefits of the plan (these are determined by negotiations between the company and the insurance carrier) but you also cannot be denied coverage under the group plan no matter what prescriptions you may take or preexisting conditions you may have. By insuring a large group of employees together under one plan of the company's choosing, individual employees are not subject to medical underwriting, rather the entire group is underwritten as a whole to determine the premium level everyone will pay. Therefore, the amount you pay in premiums as well as the quality of the coverage you receive are dependent not on how healthy you are or what benefits you would like to have, but how healthy your group is as a whole and what benefits the company has chosen for you.
Unfortunately, companies frequently have a waiting period before new employees can qualify to receive health insurance benefits. If this is the case with your new job, consider getting a short-term policy from the point where your previous coverage ends to the time when your new company's insurance kicks in. Such options are available through Health Plan One. Simply visit our Short-Term information page for your free quotes. It is important not to have a lapse in coverage of more than 63 days. If you do, your new insurance carrier may refuse to cover treatment for pre-existing conditions you may have such as asthma or acne for up to a year after your policy goes into effect. For this reason, having continuous health insurance coverage is particularly important.
What If I'm Between Jobs?
As previously mentioned, it is important not to have a break in coverage of more than 63 days. As a result, if you've recently lost your job look into extending the coverage you had with your employer through COBRA. With the COBRA program through the federal government you can extend your plan for up to 18 months after losing your job. You will however have to pick up the entire premium cost which your employer had previously been paying. For this reason, it is frequently more economical for people who've lost their jobs to invest in an individual/family insurance policy through Health Plan One.
With individual coverage you choose the health insurance carrier and benefits you want with the help of Health Plan One. We will quote plans for you and your family from all the different carriers available in New Hampshire so that you can choose from a wide price range and spectrum of options to tailor a plan that fits your needs. Even if you are not between jobs, a plan on the individual market through Health Plan One could still be the best option for your family. Many companies do not offer benefits to their employees, and often those companies that do offer benefits do so at an exorbitant cost for low quality plans. It is important to note that with individual coverage in New Hampshire each person who applies is medically underwritten and may be approved, denied, or rated-up by the carrier depending on their health history in recent months.
If you're healthy and are unhappy with the health insurance offered by your employer, are between jobs, or are not offered benefits by your company, enter your zip code into the Health Plan One quoting engine at the top of this page to view the most competitively priced plans in your area with benefits tailored to your needs. Quotes are absolutely free, and you're under no obligation to buy. Our licensed insurance specialists are also available via LiveChat (see the button to the right) or toll-free at (877) 567-5267 to answer any questions.
If you're not healthy there are still many programs available to you. See below for details on the options which best fit your medical and financial situation.
Sole Proprietor and Small Group Plans
Your first option is to see whether you qualify for a sole proprietor plan. A sole proprietor is someone who is the sole owner and only employee of their company. If you are self-employed and this is your situation, you could qualify for a sole proprietor plan in New Hampshire. Businesses with only one eligible employee are allowed to enroll in a carrier's small group health plans only during the established sole proprietor open enrollment period from April 1st to October 1st of each year. If you own a small business but are not a sole proprietor, you can apply for a small group plan at any point during the year. You must have 2 or more eligible employees who each work at least 30 hours per week. Sole proprietors and small groups which meet these requirements cannot be denied for coverage by carriers to the plan they apply for.
For more information on small group plans for this state please see our New Hampshire Small Group page.
Health Plan One can help you by quoting plans for both sole proprietors and small groups. Simply call our toll-free number at (877) 567-5267.
Medicaid and Medicare in New Hampshire
Medicaid is a state-federal cooperative program that serves those individuals and families who lack adequate resources to pay for medical care. To qualify, you must meet financial and other eligibility requirements. Full eligibility requirements are available here:http://www.dhhs.state.nh.us/DHHS/MEDICAIDPROGRAM/ELIGIBILITY/default.htm More detailed financial eligibility information is available here: http://www.dhhs.state.nh.us/DHHS/MEDASSISTELIG/default.htm Some of the specific medical services covered by the Medicaid program include hospital, physician, nursing facility, home health, lab, x-ray, family planning, rural health clinics, prescription drugs, physical-occupational-speech therapy, adult medical day care, medical transportation, medical supplies, durable medical equipment, dental, chiropractor, psychotherapy, podiatry, interpreter, advanced registered nurse practitioners, certified midwife, private duty nursing, EPSDT (early, periodic, screening and diagnostic testing), newborn home visits, extended services to pregnant women, personal care attendant, vision care, audiology, nursing facility, and home and community based care for the elderly. The program also covers services for developmentally disabled individuals and persons with acquired brain disorders, as well as services at community mental health centers.
For additional information on other programs available in the state through Medical Assistance, seehttp://www.dhhs.state.nh.us/DHHS/MEDASSISTELIG/ELIGIBILITY/default.htm
Click here for information on New Hampshire Medicare Advantage Plans.
New Hampshire Healthy Kids
New Hampshire Healthy Kids (NHHK) is a non-profit organization which provides access to low-cost or free health coverage for uninsured children and teens under age 19 in the state. There are 3 levels of programs within NHHK. Healthy Kids Gold provides health and dental services for kids and teens at no cost to their families. Healthy Kids Silver provides uninsured children and teens with a low-cost health and dental plan. Healthy Kids Buy-In (a program which does not receive any state or federal funding) is for families with higher incomes and no health insurance plan for their children. If your child is a non-citizen but a legal resident, you may be eligible for the Buy-In program. Teenagers over the age of 19 who are still enrolled in high school are also eligible for the Healthy Kids Buy-In program. Your child must be uninsured for three months before they can join the program. The current income guideline chart for all 3 of these programs is available athttp://www.nhhealthykids.com/pdfs/Income%20Guidelines2009.pdf For a full list of additional requirements see this page:http://www.nhhealthykids.com/programs_reqs.php
New Hampshire's High Risk Pool â€“ NHHP
The New Hampshire Health Plan is the state's high risk pool for those New Hampshire residents who are declined coverage in the individual market, have one of the below listed pre-existing conditions, or who are otherwise ineligible for private coverage. This program is the self-proclaimed insurer of last resort for New Hampshire residents. The state also has a low income premium subsidy program within the high risk pool for those who qualify. In order to be eligible for NHHP coverage you must be a resident of New Hampshire. You must further meet at least one of the following requirements:
- You have applied for individual health insurance and have been declined due to health or medical condition.
- You have applied for individual health insurance and been approved for coverage similar to coverage available from NHHP but at a higher premium.
- You have a medical condition that is on the list of pre-qualifying conditions
- You are federally eligible and are not eligible for, have not been offered, or have exhausted continuation coverage under COBRA or a similar program.
- You are a resident dependent of an individual covered by NHHP (or a resident family member of a child covered by NHHP).
- You are certified as eligible for either TAA or PBGC assistance.
- You have been offered health insurance but with a rider excluding coverage for a specified condition.
The pre-qualifying conditions are: chronic kidney failure/dialysis, cirrhosis, HIV/AIDS, hemophilia, hydrocephalus, Hodgkin's disease, juvenile diabetes, leukemia, major organ transplant, multiple sclerosis, muscular dystrophy, myasthenia gravis, paraplegia/quadriplegia, spina bifida, systemic lupus, and pernicious anemia.
For full details regarding eligibility requirements for NHHP please see their website at http://www.nhhealthplan.org/ Summaries of the high risk pool's plan options can be obtained here: http://www.nhhealthplan.org/policies/policies.html
The New Hampshire Department of Insurance also has a particularly useful website with extensive information on COBRA, HIPAA, and all the programs listed above. Their URL is: http://www.nh.gov/insurance/consumers/health.htm